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IT firms to pay compensation to 9/11 victims?

IT firms to pay compensation to 9/11 victims?

India slams US move to impose a new tax that makes IT firms fund compensation for 9/11 victims.

New Delhi: India has slammed the US move to impose a new tax that makes Indian IT companies like Infosys, TCS and wipro fund the compensation package for victims of 9/11.

The James Zadroga 9/11 Health & Compensation Act, 2010 proposes higher visa fees and is under consideration in the US congress. The Act has 'pay for' provisions which propose higher visa fees for H1B and L1 visas. The Act also proposes imposition of a 2% fee on goods and services imported by the US government.

The bill will raise $ 4.2 billion and comes into effect next July. The firms say its a protectionist move, India calls it a 'retrograde step' in trade relations.

India has written to the US on the visa fee hike issue. Commerce Minister Anand Sharma wrote to US Trade Representative Ronald Kirk on December 22 affirming India's stance that the matter has caused considerable apprehension and concern to the business community of the country.

Sharma had earlier raised the issue when the bill HR 6080 was passed by the Congress. Such provisions have resulted in considerable public outcry in India. Obama, during his recent visit to India, had agreed to cut trade barriers and reject protectionism.
first published:December 24, 2010, 12:11 IST